All humans have certain rights to live a sustainable life, and today we celebrate those rights on International Human Rights Day. One of the most important rights of all humans, regardless of who they are or where they come from, is their right to happiness. I know that sounds a bit generic or broad, but nowadays, living in a world full of wars, stress, and mistrust, it can be hard to live the happy life which we are entitled to.
This is especially true for teenagers. High school is a great time. We get to go to parties, hang out with friends, forge new relationships, and explore new opportunities. At the same time, high school is a pressure cooker. We have to keep up with schoolwork, get good grades, compete with our peers, and apply for college in the end. Nowadays, the pressure cooker seems to beat down on the great time we’re having. As new generations become more competitive, there are only so many opportunities available for teenagers to succeed in the real world. Being forced to compete may deprive us of our happiness as we watch our competitor rise to the top. Or vice versa.
Additionally, citizens of countries around the world can feel their pressure cookers running. Governments around the world, although they may try, may be unable to provide for all of their citizens, which can cause few to benefit and others to fall. Some governments, as sad as it is, even intentionally deprive people of their happiness by working for their own interests or even going as far as to terrorize their own people. But we’re not here to point fingers.
Living a happy life is a fundamental human right that no government or school administration can deprive its people of. Students should not have to compete with each other so that happiness can benefit one person and not the other. Instead, just as TeezTalk inspires, they should help each other rise to success. One thing I’ve personally noticed at my school is that nobody really talks about the college process with each other. Perhaps it’s not something that friends dwell upon, but for my area, I speculate competition. People don’t tell each other where they’re applying, nor do they share ideas about how to help each other reach the schools they want to get into. Instead, they keep quiet. They fear that their friends might get into their school and they won’t.
In this way, people seem to be fighting for their own happiness. It’s a battle, and whoever can reach it first will get to live a happy life. I can say confidently that this is not the happy way. For me, when my friends are happy, I’m happy. We can help each other get into our choice of colleges by talking to each other, sharing information when asked for it, and for when we get accepted or rejected, we can celebrate with our peers and comfort those who couldn’t make it. We can tell them, “You’re going to do great things no matter where you go.” Sharing and spreading that message can make all the difference in a person’s happiness. It’s a true human right. We should not deprive ourselves or others of our happiness and wellbeing.
TeenzTalk's Blog is here to amplify youth stories & perspectives on topics including personal challenges, self-care practices, initiatives in their community, & more.